Dispositional mindfulness, gratitude and self-compassion: factors affecting tinnitus distress

Megan Reeves, Florian Vogt, Elizabeth Marks

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Objective: Evidence is growing in support of the benefits of ‘positive’ psychology qualities such as self-compassion, mindfulness and gratitude in mitigating distress and disability related to various chronic health conditions. These qualities have not yet been explored in people with tinnitus. This study aimed to test whether dispositional mindfulness, gratitude and self-compassion are related to distress in a tinnitus sample. Design: This cross-sectional study involved the completion of a battery of online questionnaires. Study sample: A total of 159 participants with tinnitus completed questionnaires assessing tinnitus severity, psychological distress, negative thoughts, mindfulness, gratitude and self-compassion. Results: There were significant associations between each of the constructs, tinnitus severity and psychological distress. Multiple regressions found that all three positive qualities contributed to variance in psychological distress. Post hoc analysis revealed an indirect effect of the three positive qualities on tinnitus severity and psychological distress, mediated by thoughts about tinnitus. Conclusions: Dispositional mindfulness, gratitude and self-compassion may play a role in distress experienced by people with tinnitus. Future research could explore the contribution of these qualities to distress in a help-seeking sample and whether interventions that enhance these qualities might lead to better clinical outcomes.
Original languageEnglish
Early online date8 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - 26 Jan 2021


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